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World's largest pink diamond expected to fetch up to $30m at auction

By: Reuters     13th October 2017 "The Pink Raj", an intense pink diamond described by experts as the world's largest, is expected to fetch up to $30-million when it is auctioned in Geneva next month. The stone, which weighs just over 37 ct, was displayed by auction house Sotheby's in London this week. 

DTI calls for resolution on outstanding Doha issues

By: Schalk Burger     10th October 2017 Trade and Industry Minister Dr Rob Davies on Tuesday called for outcomes to be developed for the outstanding issues of the Doha Development Agenda (DDA). Davies was in Morocco attending the World Trade Organisation (WTO) Informal Ministerial Gathering, which was attended by Ministers from the 164... 

Radical? Really?

By: Keith Campbell     29th September 2017 Roughly in the middle of this month (September), speaking on the sidelines of the Annual General Meeting of his luxury goods businesses holding company, Switzerland-based Compagnie Financière Richemont, in Geneva, businessman Johann Rupert, generally regarded as South Africa’s richest man, said... 

Christie's to auction rare large diamond in November

By: Reuters     28th September 2017 A 163.41 ct flawless white diamond found last year in Angola will go to auction in Geneva on Nov. 14, global auction house Christie's said on Thursday. "The largest stone that ever come up on the market before of this quality was 110 ct," Francois Curiel, Christie's chairperson for Europe and... 

World's richest mines slipping from hands of multinationals

By: Bloomberg     5th September 2017 Outnumbered and outflanked, Freeport-McMoRan CEO Richard Adkerson made an about-face. Only months before, Adkerson had dismissed the idea of selling a majority stake in the Phoenix-based company’s flagship Indonesian copper-and-gold mine to local investors. But, seated beside government officials... 

World treaty to ban and reduce mercury poison comes into force 

By: News24Wire      17th August 2017 It is rated as one of the top ten chemical poisons endangering human health and the natural world. Tiny drops of this poison can be found in human teeth, in fresh fish, in light bulbs, paints, batteries and even cosmetics. And it is in the air, water and soil everywhere, in varying amounts. 

UK reassures Sacu about future trade relations, reaffirms commitment to free trade

By: Keith Campbell     4th August 2017 The Southern African Customs Union (SACU) has welcomed the UK’s intention of preventing disruption of trade relations with other countries as it leaves the European Union (EU). This was affirmed in a Joint Statement issued by SACU and the UK following discussions between Trade Ministers from the... 

Vitol drops plan to buy Gupta stake in RBCT

By: Bloomberg     18th July 2017 Vitol Group, the world’s largest independent oil trader, walked away from a deal to buy a stake in the Richards Bay Coal Terminal from a company controlled by South Africa’s Gupta family. “The consortium comprising Vitol and Burgh Group Holdings will not be proceeding with the acquisition,” the... 

CERN electricity upgrade project, Switzerland

By: Sheila Barradas     7th July 2017 The project entails the construction of new switchgear to upgrade the European Organisation for Nuclear Research’s electricity grid. 

LEM completes its surface mounted SO8 & SO16 isolated current transducers range with an integrated current conductor

     22nd June 2017 Key points: Open-loop Hall effect ASIC-based current transducers to measure from 4 A up to 30 A DC, AC or pulsed Cost effective, 2 x IC packaging for SMD automatic assembly Excellent immunity to external fields Good offset and gain drifts Wide operating temperature range from -40 to +125ºC Up to... 

South African Weather Service welcomes new CEO

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     23rd May 2017 The South African Weather Service (SAWS) has appointed Jeremiah Lengoasa CEO. He returns to SAWS after 12 years, after he left the organisation to join the World Meteorological Organisation, in Geneva, Switzerland, as assistant secretary-general in August 2005. 

Solidarity takes complaints against SA ‘race practices’ to UN 

By: African News Agency      10th May 2017 Solidarity on Wednesday said it had filed a complaint with the International Labour Organisation (ILO) against South Africa over its affirmative action and black economic empowerment policies. “Solidarity contends that government is committing unfair racial discrimination, and requests the ILO to... 

Durban, Joburg and Cape Town join global list of Treepedia cities

By: African News Agency      5th May 2017 Treepedia, an interactive website that measures the “green canopy” – trees and vegetation of cities around the world – has included Johannesburg, Durban and Cape Town as its first African cities. The announcement was made during the World Economic Forum on Africa in Durban on Friday. 

Radisson Blue Hotel – Geneva project, Switzerland

By: Sheila Barradas     24th March 2017 The project entails the construction of a 250-room hotel. 

PRAISED THEN RAIDED

     17th March 2017 Officials from the US Department of Commerce, together with those from Internal Revenue Service, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation and the Illinois State Police raided Caterpillar’s corporate headquarters in Peoria, Illinois, on March 2, reportedly seeking evidence related to allegations... 

Brexit set to change SA’s bilateral economic relationship with the UK 

By: Keith Campbell     3rd March 2017 Last month, during the debate regarding the 2017 State of the Nation address in Parliament, in Cape Town, Trade and Industry Minister Dr Rob Davies highlighted: “[A]s the UK government prepares to trigger exit negotiations from the EU (European Union), we need to prepare for a new trade... 

Musical chairs in the SA automotive industry

By: Irma Venter     3rd March 2017 South Africa’s automotive industry has seen a number of shake-ups in the first two months of the year. WesBank has announced the appointment of Mark Finlayson as the CEO of its Motor division following the departure of Simphiwe Nghona on February 1. 

Brexit set to change SA’s bilateral economic relationship with the UK

By: Keith Campbell     3rd March 2017 Last month, during the debate regarding the 2017 State of the Nation Address in Parliament in Cape Town, Trade and Industry Minister Dr Rob Davies highlighted that “[a]s the UK Government prepares to trigger exit negotiations from the EU [European Union], we need to prepare for a new trade... 

WesBank announces new CEO for its Motor division

By: Irma Venter     10th February 2017 WesBank has announced the appointment of Mark Finlayson as the CEO of its Motor division following the departure of Simphiwe Nghona on February 1. Finlayson is the current CEO of DirectAxis, a subsidiary of WesBank specialising in non-secured personal loans. 

South Africans or self-interest first?

By: Riaan de Lange     3rd February 2017 I woke to bad news recently, being immediately reminded of a television series that has undisputed longevity and is a personification of both innovation and trailblazing. It is the BBC’s 1980s classic, Allo 'Allo! Unless you are of a single-digit age, or a recent arrival to the third rock from... 

Alternative fuels power more than 5 000 flights

By: Martin Zhuwakinyu     8th December 2016 The global airline industry will have made more than 5 000 commercial flights powered by sustainable alternative fuels by the end of the year, reporters attending the International Air Transport Association’s (Iata's) global media day heard on Thursday. The alternative fuels initiative forms part... 

Air cargo volumes encourage, outperforming weak global trade

By: Martin Zhuwakinyu     8th December 2016 Although the global airfreight business continues to face headwinds from weak global trade, the International Air Transport Association (Iata) says there are encouraging signs that growth in air cargo volumes, which came in at 8.2% year‐on‐year in October, will endure into the new year. This was... 

Top gold buyer sees demand slumping on ‘black money’ curbs

By: Bloomberg     25th October 2016 In the world’s largest gold-consuming country after China, demand has just fallen off a cliff. Saurabh Gadgil, a sixth-generation jeweler, says it’s the worst year in India since he took charge of the family business in 1999. The 39-year old chairperson of PN Gadgil Jewellers, which has stores in... 

Rooibos, Honeybush among South Africa’s most widely commercially cultivated plant products

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     4th October 2016 Rooibos and Honeybush, which are both endemic to South Africa, are among the most widely commercially cultivated botanical species originating in the country, with more than 300 trademarks and 20 patents to their names, which is why they have been singled out as local treasures, according to... 

Unctad proposes import-substitution strategy for South Africa 

By: Terence Creamer     21st September 2016 African economies will grow on average by only 2% in 2016 and South Africa by just 0.3%, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development’s (Unctad’s) latest Trade and Development Report states. North Africa will expand by 1.7% and sub-Saharan Africa by 2.8%, excluding South Africa. The... 

RBCT in due process on proposed Vitol deal

By: Bloomberg     14th September 2016 Africa’s biggest coal export facility, Richards Bay Coal Terminal (RBCT), said a proposed purchase by Vitol Group of a stake of export rights from a company controlled by South Africa’s Gupta family, who are friends of President Jacob Zuma, is subject to standard procedure, according to the... 

Vitol plan to buy Gupta coal terminal stake may be thwarted

By: Bloomberg     12th September 2016 Vitol Group’s plans to buy a stake in Africa’s biggest coal terminal from a company controlled by South Africa’s Gupta family, who are friends of President Jacob Zuma, could be thwarted by the preemptive rights held by existing shareholders in the export facility, people familiar with the matter... 

Guptas’ Oakbay signs coal-export deal at premium to Eskom prices 

By: Bloomberg     8th September 2016 Oakbay Investments, owned by the Gupta family, signed a contract to export power-plant coal at a premium to what it gets from South Africa’s electricity utility, CEO Nazeem Howa said. “We signed our first export contract this week,” Howa said on a conference call Thursday. “The value of the... 

Vitol said to mull Guptas’ stake in South African coal terminal

By: Bloomberg     2nd September 2016 Swiss commodities trader Vitol Group is interested in buying a stake in South Africa’s Richards Bay Coal Terminal from a company controlled by the Gupta family, according to a person with knowledge of the matter. Buying the stake in Africa’s biggest coal export facility from Optimum Coal Holdings... 

Pöyry awarded engineering services assignment for expansion of Lausanne railway station, Switzerland

     29th July 2016 Pöyry awarded engineering services assignment for expansion of Lausanne railway station, Switzerland   Swiss Federal Railways has appointed Pöyry, as part of the engineering consortium 4G, for the "Galette - Bâtiment Voyageur" (passenger building) main lot at Lausanne station. Pöyry is deploying... 

AFC concludes debut CHF bond issue

     18th July 2016 Africa Finance Corporation, a leading pan-African multilateral development finance institution and project developer, has issued its debut senior unsecured Swiss Franc denominated bond, raising CHF 100 million with a tenor of 3 years and 150 days. The bond which pays an annual coupon of 0.85% has... 

Solar Impulse arrives in Europe, pointing the way to the future of transportation

     24th June 2016 Seville, Spain, and Zurich, Switzerland, June 23, 2016 – The pioneering solar aircraft has completed the first flight of its kind across the Atlantic, proving that the latest generation of sustainable technologies can enable a new era of environmentally friendly transport systems and solutions.... 

First ARVs from State-owned pharmaceutical company expected by 2017

By: News24Wire      29th March 2016 During his State of the Nation Address, President Jacob Zuma announced that a State-owned pharmaceutical company called Ketlaphela had been established. He noted that “the company will participate in the supply of antiretroviral drugs to the Department of Health from the 2016/17 financial year”. 

The LRC expects South Africa to stand up in support of Human Rights Defenders

     23rd March 2016 Human rights activists in South Africa have been victims of aggression, intimation, assault and murder, such as what happened last night in the Xolobeni region of the Eastern Cape when the chairperson of the Amadiba Crisis Committee, Mr Bazooka Rhadebe, was shot by two gunmen outside his home. It... 

VIRTUAL DRIVING

     18th March 2016 Attendees try a virtual reality experience in Smart Brabus concept vehicle, manufactured by Daimler, during the 86th Geneva International Motor Show in Geneva, Switzerland. The car is the company’s smallest convertible. 

Rolls Royce goes black, Toyota unveils small crossover and Ferrari now seats four

By: Irma Venter     9th March 2016 The eighty-sixth Geneva International Motor Show is set to end this weekend. It produced, as always, an impressive unveiling of exotic cars, aimed at those with deep pockets. However, some manufacturers have also used the Swiss platform to introduce a number of mainstream models, some of which... 

The LRC makes submissions to the United Nations Human Rights Committee

By: Priscilla Moroke     8th March 2016 Yesterday in Geneva, the Legal Resources Centre made oral submissions on South Africa’s initial state report under article 40 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (the Covenant) to the United Nations Human Rights Committee (the Committee) at its 116th session.    The... 

Why Africa can't afford to have an outbreak of the Zika virus

     10th February 2016 If the latest mosquito-borne Zika virus breaks out in Africa the continent would be less prepared than any other to deal with the outbreak. Zika fever is a mosquito-borne viral disease caused by the Zika virus which is suspected of leading to the birth of deformed babies. The virus is transmitted... 

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